The Libyan government will not tolerate foreign journalists entering the country illegally to cover ongoing anti-government protests and revolts. In fact, U.S. diplomats were informed that any unauthorized journalists will be looked at as Al-Qaeda collaborators.
The U.S. State Department, after talks with Libyan officials, shared that certain members of CNN, BBC Arabic and Al Arabiya would be allowed to enter the country legally. However, “the Libyan government said that it was not responsible for the safety of these journalists, who risked immediate arrest on the full range of possible immigration charges.”
Earlier this week, Libyan leader Muammar Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi evoked Al-Qaeda “poster boy” Osama bin Laden when discussing the unrest in his country, telling Libyan TV that bin Laden is “the enemy who is manipulating people” and warning Libyans not to be “swayed” by him.
Of course, it’s never been easy for foreign journalists to enter Libya, at least not since Gaddafi rose to power in the late 60s. There are scores of personal accounts of journalists attempting to enter the country – even to cover something as seemingly innocuous as a youth festival – only to come face-to-face with threats of detainment and propaganda messages.
h/t Wire Update
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